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Sudan ruling party dissident founds new 'Reform' group

The leading dissident who was expelled from Sudan's ruling party last month said Wednesday he has formed a new "Reform" party which has attracted thousands of followers. Ghazi Salahuddin Atabani, ex-adviser to President Omar al-Bashir, also told AFP that he does not rule out standing as a presidential candidate in 2015 elections, although he is "no Hercules." Atabani said his Reform Now Movement has lodged an application with the registrar of political parties and should be "fully registered" in three months.

Sudan ruling party dissident founds new 'Reform' group

The leading dissident in Sudan's ruling party, who was expelled from the organisation last month, said on Wednesday he has formed a new "Reform" party which has attracted thousands of followers. Ghazi Salahuddin Atabani, ex-adviser to President Omar al-Bashir, also told AFP that he does not rule out standing as a presidential candidate in 2015 elections, although he is "no Hercules". Atabani said his Reform Now Movement has lodged an application with the registrar of political parties. "We should be fully registered in three months," he said.

Sudan rebels, govt clash again south of rail town

Rebels and government forces in Sudan's South Kordofan state have clashed again south of a railway town the insurgents briefly occupied last month, both sides said on Monday. Fighting in the state has intensified since early November, at the start of the dry season, as the government began an operation to crush the ethnic rebels who rose up two years ago. Access to South Kordofan is restricted for journalists, aid workers and others, making verification of claims by both sides difficult.

Sudan rebels, govt clash again south of rail town

Rebels and government forces in Sudan's South Kordofan state have clashed again south of a railway town the insurgents briefly occupied last month, both sides said on Monday. Fighting in the state has intensified since early November, at the start of the dry season, as the government began an operation to crush the ethnic rebels who rose up two years ago. Access to South Kordofan is restricted for journalists, aid workers and others, making verification of claims by both sides difficult.

Fears of renewed war in Sudan's East: ICG report

Renewed war is increasingly likely in Eastern Sudan, seven years after a peace agreement promised to address complaints of economic and political neglect, a report warned on Tuesday. "Unless the East's marginalisation is adequately addressed, renewed war is a growing possibility," said the Brussels-based International Crisis Group (ICG). The 2006 Eastern Sudan Peace Agreement ended years of low-level insurgency in Sudan's East, which borders Eritrea and includes Red Sea, Kassala and Gedaref states.

Sudan rebels say mortars fired at South Kordofan capital

Sudanese rebels have fired mortar bombs into the capital of South Kordofan state where they rose up against the government two years ago, the insurgents said on Wednesday. The shelling of Kadugli on Tuesday was in retaliation for an air raid two days earlier that killed two children, said Arnu Ngutulu Lodi, spokesman for the Sudan People's Liberation Army-North (SPLA-N). "We targeted military positions" with five mortar rounds, he told AFP.

Sudan confronts politically explosive bread shortage

Sudan battled on Tuesday a politically explosive bread shortage that has forced Khartoum residents to wait hours for the staple food because a lack of foreign exchange is limiting wheat imports. "If this continues, people will not keep silent," said Khalifa Hassan, a government worker queueing with about 10 other customers at a neighbourhood bakery in North Khartoum on Monday night. AFP reporters saw lines of 15-20 people at Khartoum-area bakeries on Tuesday as well, about three days after shortages began.

Sudan rebels say two children killed in air raid

Two children have been killed during a Sudanese government air strike in South Kordofan state, where troops have been battling rebels for two years, the insurgents said on Monday. Sudan's military spokesman could not be reached for comment, and the government restricts access to the region, which makes independent verification difficult. The children died in Tanasa village, near Buram town, in the strike by a government jet on Sunday, the Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North said in a statement. It said the victims were aged 10 and seven.

Rebels withdraw from Sudan railway town

Sudanese rebels on Monday said they had withdrawn from a railway town they briefly occupied before the government launched air strikes. The Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) early on Sunday entered Abu Zabad, a small community near South Kordofan, a state where rebels have been fighting for two years. Later in the day they pulled out "because the government started air strikes", JEM spokesman Gibril Adam Bilal told AFP. A local resident reported aircraft including helicopters in the area before nightfall.

Sudan rebels claim strike on Kordofan town

Sudanese rebels on Sunday struck a town near the border of troubled South Kordofan state, where witnesses confirmed fighting was under way. The military later said they had defeated the insurgents. "We were awakened at 6:00 am by continuous loud explosions and the sound of shooting," said a resident of Abu Zabad, in North Kordofan state. He asked not to be named for security reasons. "Armed men in Land Cruisers drove into the town and targeted a SAF compound and the police station," he said, referring to the Sudan Armed Forces.
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